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Thread: Rural Culture

  1. #1
    Chairman of the bored Maister's avatar
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    Rural Culture

    Did anyone in Cyburbia grow up in or around or have exposure to the world of grange halls, county fairs, and 4H?

    How much of the 'romance' of rural agrarian life is real and how much is myth? What are your impressions of rural culture?

    I don't want to lead this thread with any particular thesis and would like to keep it open to a broad range of discussion dealing with any aspect of rural culture or how it compares to its urban and suburban counterparts.



    Last edited by Maister; 27 Feb 2009 at 10:45 AM.

  2. #2
    Cyburbian Captain Worley's avatar
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    I grew up on a farm, but grange halls didn't exist, and I went to a private school, so no 4-h.

    But, I did enjoy being able to enjoy the fields, woods, and streams. I couldn't imagine living in the densities y'all seem to enjoy. Charleston SC is too crowded together for me, and I freaked out the one time I went to downtown Atlanta.

    But what was it like? I miss seeing the stars at night, laying out in the cool grass and looking at them. I miss the quiet, and hearing the horn from the 10:00pm frieght train five miles away, just before I went to sleep. I miss waking up with the birds chirping.

    We leased the farm out to a dairy farmer, so I didn't have a lot of those kind of chores, but there was a big farmhouse, numerous outbuildings, and a lot of land to maintain. I probably mowed eight hours every week. Thank God for Dad's Gravely, although I hated that beast at the time.

    I'd love to buy some land and a big old farmhouse. it is a nice way to live, and with the internet, you don't have the issues with shopping that you did back then.
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  3. #3
    Chairman of the bored Maister's avatar
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    I know one myth I'd like to bring to light and that's the notion of farmers being ignorant back woods hicks. There may have been a kernel of truth to this stereotype 100+ years ago in the heyday era of the 'family farm' but no longer is it the case.

    I once worked on a friend's campaign staff (state house race) and were trying to devise a campaign strategy for the rural areas of the district. We concluded that we needed to appeal to farmers in the most intelligent way possible, after all they were in all probability the most educated individuals to be found in rural areas.

  4. #4
    Cyburbian WSU MUP Student's avatar
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    I also grew up on a farm.... It was a dairy farm of a few hundred acres on the very edge of the Detroit suburbs (I don't think exurbs existed then ). I went to public schools but we had no FFA or 4-H.... but I went to school in the city (our property was the very edge of the district); all the other districts around ours had those types of clubs though.

    We did go to the county fair every year though and even now, I still go out there occasionally.

    Though we had a very active farm, it was more of a hobby farm for my dad. He had a full-time job in Detroit and would wake up early to make sure the cows were milked before driving off to work and then milk them again in the evening.

    As far as culture? Growing up in a rural area, I always thought rural culture was an oxymoron. While I of course enjoy visiting my parents and I like the open space, I have never considered making my life in an area like out there. I like the idea of being able to walk to the stores and post office or restaurants and if I do want to drive somewhere, it's always a much shorter drive in the city than it is way out there.
    "Where free unions and collective bargaining are forbidden, freedom is lost." - 1980 Republican presidential candidate Ronald Reagan

  5. #5
    Cyburbian Queen B's avatar
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    Well Ye Haw!!!
    Yes Yes Yes.

    We are livin it.

    The school where my children go is stromg in FFA ( Future Farmers of America).
    My girls have been involved in contests like milk judging. Mine got 5th place overall with over 100 contestants.
    The youngest just got done with different cuts of meat ( beef mostly) and they are working on Chickens right now. I think they cut some up the other day.

    It is an excused absence to call in that the cows are out and you will be there when you get them in.

    In my work. The courthouse all but closes down during FAIR week, seriously...

    So no not a myth, we are still livin it.

    However, we have the best of both worlds, we live in a city that has many amenities. So we are not livin in the sticks.

    It is a good education for the kids. Small schoold are great. There are only 400 kids in 400 sq miles K-12.

    Oooh! And today is HICK day at their school. SO they can in fact make fun of it.
    It is all a matter of perspective!!!

  6. #6
    Cyburbian Richi's avatar
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    I didn't grow up in the country, but my parents did and I had many cousins that lived on farms. I always thought how great it was for them to beable to drive at 12 years of age. Of course, they didn't think so highly of it since driving generally ment sitting on a tractor all day or driving the ratty farm truck back an forth on the farm.

    The "edge" of Tampa was generally ringed with truck farms and dary farms when I was a kid. These were not giant agrabusiness operations. Often just a couple hundred acres. But they produced a substantial amount of the fresh vegetables consumed in the city and almost all the dairy products. So while those farmers did live "in the country" they were generally within a 15 minute drive to the city and often went to town. I too wnen to a private school ion town and my best friend lived on one of those farms. I looked forward to going home with him to spend the night. It was great on the farm! He looked forward to spending the night at my place. We could ridw the bus to town or to my grandparents where we could play in my granddads shop. So I think that there were + & - to both.

    I don't think I would take to the big farm with the closest neighbora mile away and the closest town 15 miles away ant the town having a population of 15K at that. The near in local farm might be nice, however. Sprawl almost killed that concept, but I'm detecting a fast growing interest in local agraculture so we may see changes. It's hard to remain a farmer when a developer offers you $10 million cash. NOW!

    Capt'n - Don't forget the Sears Catalog. That was the enternet shopping of the time, especially for rural folks. It took a little longer to get your order back, because you had to mail the order in, but shipping was just as good as it is now (unless you pay through the nose for FedEx next or 2nd day).

  7. #7
    Cyburbian CJC's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Maister View post
    I know one myth I'd like to bring to light and that's the notion of farmers being ignorant back woods hicks. There may have been a kernel of truth to this stereotype 100+ years ago in the heyday era of the 'family farm' but no longer is it the case.

    I once worked on a friend's campaign staff (state house race) and were trying to devise a campaign strategy for the rural areas of the district. We concluded that we needed to appeal to farmers in the most intelligent way possible, after all they were in all probability the most educated individuals to be found in rural areas.
    I would agree 100% with this. Most of my extended family on my mom's side is from central Louisiana (Pineville/Alexandria area). My grandparents and one uncle especially are stereotypical backwoods ignorant hicks, but none of them are farmers. They're basically the folks that own 5-10 acres, have a few horses (and maybe a few other farm animals thrown in), 17 broken down trucks, one that runs, and anywhere from 2-5 sheds around the property to house "stuff that may be worth somethin' some day."

    However, I remember meeting a few of the actual farmers in the area over the years, and they were completely different. They were very articulate and well educated.

    One of my cousins was very involved in 4-H growing up, and he's the only one of my cousins from down there (six in that area) that is going to college, mostly because of his experience in 4-H. A couple of the others are doing pretty well for themselves, but he's the only one likely to not be a "hick", even though he will remain in rural areas.
    Two wrongs don't necessarily make a right, but three lefts do.

  8. #8
    Cyburbian btrage's avatar
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    I grew up in the city and now live in the city. However, at one point after my marriage, we lived with my FIL in the "country", where my wife grew up. The only thing I enjoyed was going on walks with my daughter so she could see the horses/cows. Coupled with being laid off, It was actually the most depressing time of my life, and the isolation didn't help.

    My problem with rural culture is that there is a segment of it that has a very anti-anything-to-do-with-cities attitude. I found this quite pervasive during my time in the "country". Which I find odd as a planner because although I don't want to live in a rural area, I appreciate and respect those who do. I'm not afraid to say that there is a large segment of rural culture that is very xenophobic-like.

    My wife misses the night stars and having a larger backyard for our girls to play in. That's about it i think. She was never into the 4-H kind of stuff, nor were her brothers and sisters.
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  9. #9
    Chairman of the bored Maister's avatar
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    A little more fuel for discussion...Doesn't it also seem to you that people living in rural areas and living rural lifestyles are acutely self-aware of their status? I mean you don't hear people wax poetic that often about urban living do you? There are lots of magazines and other publications which revel and perpetuate rural culture. Here's one called 'Country Living'. It's filled with articles about refurbishing antiques, recipes, herb gardening, crafts...hmmm sounds a lot like the contents of many other women's magazines out there, but it's ostensibly targeted towards rural women. Funny you don't see comparable urban life magazines extolling the virtues of urban living do you? - perhaps featuring articles like "getting the gum off your shoe soles made easy" or "crossing six lane streets at night: a pedestrian nightmare"

    Quote Originally posted by btrage
    My problem with rural culture is that there is a segment of it that has a very anti-anything-to-do-with-cities attitude. I found this quite pervasive during my time in the "country". Which I find odd as a planner because although I don't want to live in a rural area, I appreciate and respect those who do. I'm not afraid to say that there is a large segment of rural culture that is very xenophobic-like.
    If you think about it, though, it goes both ways. Many urban denizens have a comparable disdain for things associated with rural lifestyles.

  10. #10
    Cyburbian ofos's avatar
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    It's not a matter of intelligence, it's just education and exposure to other environments. There is no lack of stupid people in either the city or the country. When I was doing planning assistance for rural townships in Michigan, the farmers were the best people to work with. Many were well educated and all understood the environment and how people impacted it. The large lot, city transplants were the worst. Again, many were well educated but many more were just ignorant NIMBYs who thought that their moving to the country should somehow insulate them from anyone else wanting to do the same thing.

    Using my grandfather and father of examples of rural people, both had left school before completing high school in order help provide for their families. Both had voracious appetites for knowledge, read extensively and understood not only farming, but also economics in a practical sense as well as history and philosophy. In my father's case, I would have put his knowledge in two areas, the American West and the Civil War, on a par with any of my American history professors in college. Were they street-smart in an urban sense? Absolutely not, but any salesman was liable to find himself at a severe disadvantage trying to make a living from either of them.
    “Death comes when memories of the past exceed the vision for the future.”

  11. #11
    Cyburbian btrage's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Maister View post
    If you think about it, though, it goes both ways. Many urban denizens have a comparable disdain for things associated with rural lifestyles.
    It's similar, but not the same.

    Sure....there are many city-folk that think all people living in rural areas are uneducated hicks. But there is a very homogeneous group-think that comes into play when rural-folk talk about city-folk. More of an us versus them attitude.

    Just my opinion from having lived in both a city of 200,000 people and a rural township of 2500 people.
    "I'm very important. I have many leather-bound books and my apartment smells of rich mahogany"

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    Corn Burning Fool giff57's avatar
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    Grew up on a farm near a town of 300, so yes I'm rural. Did the 4H thing and worked summers on the farm.
    “As soon as public service ceases to be the chief business of the citizens, and they would rather serve with their money than with their persons, the State is not far from its fall”
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    Chairman of the bored Maister's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by btrage View post
    More of an us versus them attitude.
    Yes, now I know what you're talking about. I'd have to agree there's more of a sense of organized/institutional/formalized opposition there.

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    Cyburbian ofos's avatar
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    Back to Maister's original question about the "romance" of the rural agrarian life. I did grow up on a farm, I did participate in 4H and county fairs. I did go to rural schools, including a one-room school for a short period of time. Was it romantic? No, but it was what it was which was hard work in a scenic rural environment. I chose to leave the country life, go to college and live the exciting, "romantic", big city life. Know what? It was hard work in a scenic urban environment. I now have a house in Dallas where I work hard during the week because I can make a living there. I have another house on a small farm in E. Texas where I work hard on weekends because I enjoy seeing and hearing the livestock, the wildlife, seeing the stars at night, and having neighbors who are friendly and will drop what they're doing to help when needed,

    Yes, now I know what you're talking about. I'd have to agree there's more of a sense of organized/institutional/formalized opposition there.
    Maybe that's because there are less people and they actually know each other well enough to be organized.
    “Death comes when memories of the past exceed the vision for the future.”

  15. #15
    Chairman of the bored Maister's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by ofos View post
    Maybe that's because there are less people and they actually know each other well enough to be organized.
    Probably.

    I also think the phenomenon is closely related to what Dan was recently inquiring about in Random Thoughts. When I read that I didn't think 'oh, that's a Michigan thing' so much as that's a rural thing.

  16. #16
    Cyburbian Captain Worley's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by btrage View post
    It's similar, but not the same.

    Sure....there are many city-folk that think all people living in rural areas are uneducated hicks. But there is a very homogeneous group-think that comes into play when rural-folk talk about city-folk. More of an us versus them attitude.

    Just my opinion from having lived in both a city of 200,000 people and a rural township of 2500 people.
    I think what happens is a lot of times people from the city come into a rural community and tell the rural giuys how much better things are in the city and how the rural guys need to run things the way they do in the cities. I've seen it in subtle, and not so subtle ways.

    And Maister, Mom used to get Country Living but she ditched it after a years because, "It was geared towards folks in the city trying to live country." And it is, after picking up an issue.
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  17. #17
    Cyburbian otterpop's avatar
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    My mother's family were farmers. Her father was the county agent, a sugar cane farmer, president of the local bank (which stayed open throughout the Depression), and had an oil and gas distributorship. Let's just say the man was a multi-tasker. He was college-educated and a hell of a great guy. He got up early and left work every day at 3:30 so he could be with his family.

    My uncle is also college-educated and was a good muscian. He doesn't fit the mold of the typical farmer, though he literally does have a red neck from exposure to the sun.

    I grew up in New Orleans and the suburbs. My exposure to a rural lifestyle was limited to visits to my grandparent's home.

    Of course, Montana is very rural-minded, though most people live in towns and cities. Lots of hobby farmers. The valley is littered with horse ghettos (what we call 5-10 acres of land stripped clean of vegetation, supporting two unhappy horses and a mobile home or claptrap house).

    Lots of people like to wear their big Stetsons, western shirts, jeans and cowboy boots. "Big hat, no cows" is what the real ranchers derisively call them. A lot of the big ranches are now owned by dotcom millionaires and movie stars.

    In my job I ocassionally work with real farmers and ranchers. Most of great people. One guy had this classic craggy western face, a lean rancher's body and was known as "Buck". He is a nice, polite and smart fellow. A joy to work with.

    Also worked with a ranch foreman whose ranch was giving him a few acres to retire on. He was a hoot. Had great stories to tell about his quirky neighbors (including the Unabomber). His jeans, shirt and hat were the real deal. His hat looked like more than a couple horses had stepped on it.

    My favorite story he told was about the time he picked up this fellow who was hitchhiking on Dalton Mountain Road. The hitchhiker was from an area known for hermits and quirky folks, and this fellow apparently did not believe too much in the regular application of hot water and soap. The cowboy had his cattle dog in the front seat. When the hitchhiker got in, the dog took a whiff of him, then jumped out the window and got into the bed of the truck. You gotta smell bad if a cattle dog can't stand you. The cowboy said after the hitchhiker got out, he had to go back to the house and spray the inside of the truck with Lysol.

    The local high school all have a rodeo club. The county rodeo is a big deal across the state. Barrel-racing is a popular sport for young girls and a lot of boys can rope pretty well. 4-H is big here. Every year at the Last Chance Stampede there is a sheep riding competitions for the little kids and 4-H contests for the older kids. I like seeing the animals these kids have raised for the 4-H projects. It is not uncommon for our subdivisions to have a covenants that prohibits the raising and keepinfg of livestock with the exception of 4-H animals.

    Some of our ranchers are very good stewards of the land and dedicate land for conservation easements for the enjoyment of all. Our senior US senator was raised on the biggest ranch around here. His nephew, who died in Iraq, is buried on the family ranch, whcih sprawls acorss at least two counties.

    Sadly, the rural culture is becoming less of a reality and more something people cling to as a vestige of their heritage. It is not practical to keep large animals on small acreage, but having a horse is so Montana. Ranches become less profitable and valuable hay land becomes developed into subdivisions. Then those new land owners complain because the rancher or farmer keeps early and late hours, and his equipment runs late and loud late into the evening during harvest time, or complain about the smell of manure. I suppose they expect the farmers to diaper and change their cows.
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  18. #18
    Cyburbian ofos's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Maister View post
    Probably.

    I also think the phenomenon is closely related to what Dan was recently inquiring about in Random Thoughts. When I read that I didn't think 'oh, that's a Michigan thing' so much as that's a rural thing.
    There is an "Us vs. Them" dynamic. Al Capp really perpetuated the rural hick myth with his "Dogpatch" cartoon strip and television has also created or enhanced some urban and rural stereotypes to appeal to the overwhelmingly urban entertainment market.

    Shucks, it's real hard for us Kountry hicks not ta be dang depressed whut with all them city slickers laffin' at us.
    “Death comes when memories of the past exceed the vision for the future.”

  19. #19
    Cyburbian mike gurnee's avatar
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    I grew up on a farm.It was a thoroughbred farm outside of Lexington KY. For the folks in west KS, it was just a farm. No 4-H, we were not real "farmers". Was in a pony club for a couple of years. I echo Capt. Worley's comments...except I would not go back. Out here we are surrounded by farmers and ranchers (to you city folk: there is a difference). The "rural culture" thing, however, is a hasty generalization.

  20. #20
    Cyburbian Queen B's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by mike gurnee View post
    I grew up on a farm.It was a thoroughbred farm outside of Lexington KY. For the folks in west KS, it was just a farm. No 4-H, we were not real "farmers". Was in a pony club for a couple of years. I echo Capt. Worley's comments...except I would not go back. Out here we are surrounded by farmers and ranchers (to you city folk: there is a difference). The "rural culture" thing, however, is a hasty generalization.
    Oh yeah Mr. "The president gives accolades to your fine town in his speech to congress"
    It is all a matter of perspective!!!

  21. #21
    Cyburbian hilldweller's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Maister View post
    A little more fuel for discussion...Doesn't it also seem to you that people living in rural areas and living rural lifestyles are acutely self-aware of their status? I mean you don't hear people wax poetic that often about urban living do you? There are lots of magazines and other publications which revel and perpetuate rural culture. Here's one called 'Country Living'. It's filled with articles about refurbishing antiques, recipes, herb gardening, crafts...hmmm sounds a lot like the contents of many other women's magazines out there, but it's ostensibly targeted towards rural women. Funny you don't see comparable urban life magazines extolling the virtues of urban living do you? - perhaps featuring articles like "getting the gum off your shoe soles made easy" or "crossing six lane streets at night: a pedestrian nightmare"

    If you think about it, though, it goes both ways. Many urban denizens have a comparable disdain for things associated with rural lifestyles.
    Two things on this. Country living has always been seen as a sort of virtuous thing in this country, whereas cities not at all, quite the opposite even (those immoral, drunken, filthy heathens). Probably has to due with the self-reliant nature of living off the land, going back to the whole Jefferson agrarian republic. So there are some uniquely American ideals about country life and farming in particular. How often do media and political figures use language to refer to people in rural areas as "real americans" and all that? A lot it seems.

    Secondly, I think a lot of people living in suburbs aspire to be rural, when in most cases they live in a subdivision in sprawlville. When I spent time as a kid at friends' houses (usually WASP households) I noticed that they'd often be decked out in a rural americana theme, and I always thought some of the stuff was kitschy and out of place, like: what's up with that tractor painting, why is there a butter urn in the kitchen, why so many stitched pillows on the couch, etc? And lots of pets- too many damn animals like a farmhouse. I never understood it, but it was evident their domestic ideal was in a different place, a different time even. When life was simpler I guess (and when there where probably no black people).

  22. #22
    Cyburbian ofos's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by hilldweller View post
    Two things on this. Country living has always been seen as a sort of virtuous thing in this country, whereas cities not at all, quite the opposite even (those immoral, drunken, filthy heathens). Probably has to due with the self-reliant nature of living off the land, going back to the whole Jefferson agrarian republic. So there are some uniquely American ideals about country life and farming in particular. How often do media and political figures use language to refer to people in rural areas as "real americans" and all that? A lot it seems.
    Truth be told, it was probably these attributes "whereas cities not at all, quite the opposite even (those immoral, drunken, filthy heathens" that inspired me to leave rural life and become an urban dweller.

    As to "How often do media and political figures use language to refer to people in rural areas as "real americans" and all that?" The images of grandma in her apron serving cookies and ice cream to the extended family who are basking in the backlit glow of street lights, steel mills, or even suburban strip malls just doesn't have the inspirational impact of the fantasy rural life.
    “Death comes when memories of the past exceed the vision for the future.”

  23. #23
    Cyburbian Linda_D's avatar
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    I grew up on a farm where we raised fruits and vegetables for sale at the farm stand plus beef cattle and field crops (hay, corn, oats). My Dad also worked in a local factory in the small town a few miles away. I was active in 4-H showing beef cattle and horses. Today I'm a frustrated farmer at heart, filling my small city lot with more and more flowers and plants (and less grass!).

    Some of my best friends are from my home town because I'm around almost every weekend in the summer. My brothers and I still own the family farm, although the house is gone. I have a little camper that I use as my base. I plant and trim trees, mow and clear trails, hike the woods with my dog, and swim in the pond. I gather and haul firewood for my campfires. I put in some raspberry plants last fall, and if they take and the deer don't get 'em, I'll expand my planting plot in the fall (there's no room on my lot in Jamestown).

    I like the rhythm of rural/small town life. March is the Maple Sugar Festival. April 1 is the opening of trout season. May brings "Plow Days", planting season, and spring turkey hunting. June is haying and strawberry season, July is parades, more haying, and early sweet corn. August is fair season: last year I hit all three local fairs: Chautauqua, Cattaraugus, and Erie. September and October are the big harvest months, everything from apples to squash, and November brings my family's "high holidays": shotgun deer season. You can take the girl out of the country, but you can't take the country out of the girl: I like chicken barbeques, country music jamborees, the Langford Tractor Pull, the Gerry Rodeo, and Harley Days. I love sitting around a campfire in the dark talking gardening or horses or tales of a childhood that seems alien to the way most children live today.

    I like living in a place where people knew my parents (although those are getting fewer and fewer since my Dad would have been 91 last September and my Mother 86). I like hooking up with friends from high school or running into some of my teachers from high school in the local Jubilee Market. I don't care if all my neighbors know my business -- anonymity isn't my thing. People care about you here, perhaps because there are so few people here.

    When I was 18, I couldn't wait to leave for college and the "big city" (ie, Buffalo, 35 miles away). By the time I was 35, I wanted to come home. About 11 years ago, I moved to the small city of Jamestown, NY from Albany, NY, so I'm getting closer -- just 35 miles away! If I didn't have to work, I'd be there already, but I think I'm going to have to wait until I retire to do so -- less than 7 years to go!.

  24. #24
    Chairman of the bored Maister's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by mike gurnee View post
    The "rural culture" thing, however, is a hasty generalization.
    This occurred to me as well: guilty as charged. The idea of lumping all 'rural folk' into the same group IS an oversimplification. I think we find differences in attitudes, beliefs, and opinions between rural inhabitants based on the region we're talking about. There's a world of difference between the families living in, say, northern Vermont, versus the Texas panhandle, or southern Illinois, or eastern Washington, or southern Mississippi, or western North Carolina. Many of those differences have to do with the degree of isolation, primary economic activities, proximity of urban centers but also there are other cultural factors that play into it as well e.g. ethnicity, settlement patterns, and other historical factors.

    I'm glad you pointed that out.

  25. #25
    Cyburbian wahday's avatar
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    My family lost the farm in the in Oklahoma a few generations back. They had been farmers of Scottish descent who moved from Tennessee to what was then "Indian Territory" in present day Oklahoma. So far as I can figure, they were squatters, ilegally farming on designated "Indian lands" and when Oklahoma became a territory opened up to white settlers, they were on the wrong side of the line and had to give up the farm. This is very much like one of the books in the Little House on the Prairie series where the family has to leave their settlement because the government had given it to Native Tribes.

    From there, the story is pretty classic Grapes of Wrath - my Great Grandmother had TB during the dustbowl and the family all migrated to Arizona (Phoenix area). She died shortly after the move and the rest of the kids scattered, mostly to California (though I think they were seeking work other than as farm hands).

    My grandfather, however, stayed in Oklahoma. He was still in HS and had been granted a scholarship to Texas Tech, so he stayed. He ended up working for Standard Oil, so he was very much part of the shifting economy of Texas/Oklahoma at that time.

    My father and mother did have a fairly small town/somewhat rural experience growing up and also had educational opportunities that allowed them to seek other pastures as professionals. I think for them, growing up in a religiously intolerant context like Oklahoma, they decided to run from small towns and farm life like the plague all the way to the East Coast.

    Being a good thorn in the side of my parents, I have cultivated a strong interest in rural life and farming in particular. My father would say that small town/rural life is stifling and controlling, but I am not convinced that is so much the reality anymore (depending on where you live, I suppose). We dream of settling in a small town one day.

    New Mexico defies many of my notions of the split between rural and urban. I live in Albuquerque, which is definitely urban, but the moment you leave the city, the landscape is so sparsely populated, you are immediately thrust into a more rural context. SO, even in the city, 4H is strong and popular, there are many operating farms within the metro area, and there are still parts of town where horses, chickens, cows and sheep (pigs are not so popular here, but you do come across them occasionally) are a common site. We're trying to connect my son with 4H as he has a real interest in animal husbandry.
    The purpose of life is a life of purpose

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